Nanoemulsions as Ophthalmic Drug Delivery Systems

Turk J Pharm Sci. 2021 Oct 28;18(5):652-664. doi: 10.4274/tjps.galenos.2020.59319.


Nanoemulsions are liquid-in-liquid dispersion with a droplet size of about 100 nm. They have a transparent appearance, high rate of bioavailability, and increased shelf life. Nanoemulsions mainly consist of oil, water, surfactant, and cosurfactant and can be prepared by high- and low-energy methods. Diluted nanoemulsions are utilized for the delivery of ophthalmic drugs due to their capability to penetrate the deep layers of the ocular structure, provide a sustained release effect, and reduce the frequency of administration and side effects. These nanoemulsions are subjected to certain tests, such as safety, stability, pH profile, rheological studies, and so on. Cationic nanoemulsions are prepared for topical ophthalmic delivery of active ingredients from cationic agents to increase the drug residence time on the ocular surface, reducing their clearance from the ocular surface and improving drug bioavailability. This review article summarizes the main characteristics of nanoemulsions, ophthalmic nanoemulsions, and cationic nanoemulsions and their components, methods of preparation, and the evaluation parameters for ophthalmic nanoemulsions.

Keywords: Nanoemulsion; cationic nanoemulsions; ophthalmic drug delivery.